Whether you travel for work or are on vacation, you don’t have to skip your workout, if you don’t want to. In fact, it’s quite easy to keep working out while on the road – you just need to be a little flexible, love the challenge, and be prepared to change up your workout routine a bit.
Traveling and being away from your normal place of training can be a great opportunity to learn or try something new. And, if you want it to be, it can liven and freshen things up – both mentally and physically. It allows you to explore new places, whether it’s the local sights or just a different gym with different equipment.
Look for opportunities to do activities you can’t do at home. And if you’re still hesitant, remember, that some exercise is better than no exercise at all. So enjoy the variety and embrace the change.
Go for a Run
Let’s start with a classic. Running is a great way to get your workout done while exploring the local area and do a little sightseeing. Ask your hotel receptionist or concierge for advice one the best places to run – and anywhere you should avoid.
Make sure you take note of your outbound route so you can find your way back easily and respect local dress restrictions if traveling in countries with strict modesty laws. If you are running at night, stick to well-lit areas and wear bright, reflective clothing. Always carry some form of I.D.
Classes, Sports, & Activities
If you’re staying at a resort with lots of activities or classes, take advantage of trying sports that you would otherwise not be able to do at home. Water-based activities like sailing, paddle boarding, and surfing are great. Or take the opportunity to learn a new sport such as tennis or golf, with taster courses.
Perhaps your hotel also has some more calming and meditative options like yoga or Tai chi, which you may be able to practise on the beach or in a green space. Enquire about group hiking or walking tours to explore the area with others. If you prefer to stay indoors, there may be fitness classes on offer, like HIIT, circuits, and dance based workouts.
If these options are not available, there are still plenty of other things you can do to keep active.
It’s with you wherever you go. Your body is your very own personal gym. Push-ups, lunges, squats, burpees, sit-ups, planks, chair dips, and more. There are literally dozens of exercises you can do using nothing more than your body.
Bodyweight exercises are simple and are easy on your joints but still remarkably effective and you can make them as easy or as hardcore as you want, just by altering the angle of your body.
A great way to get a workout from the comfort of your room, is to do an online workout. There is an endless variety of free or affordable workouts that you can follow. Online yoga, Pilates, and circuit workouts that require no equipment are a great choice while on the road.
Hit the Beach
Exercising while away is a perfect excuse to exercise outdoors and skip the gym. Do cardio or grab your resistance bands or your own library of bodyweight exercises and head to the nearest beach to exercise. Hit the beach early and you’ll have it all to yourself.
You can run or swim, do interval training in the form of beach sprints, run up dunes, or do some strength moves using bottled water, or by (safely) using whatever rocks or driftwood you find.
Head to Your Hotel Gym
Hotel gyms can range from very well equipped to not much more than a broken stationary bike and a couple of dumbbells. Whatever you have access to, with imagination, you can create a productive workout.
If your hotel doesn’t have a gym, and you really don’t want to miss your regular workout, you could try looking for a local gym that offers a “pay as you go” option, so you can use the facilities without having to join. If you are going to be in the same area for a few weeks, it may be worth asking if short-term memberships are available.
Sometime the hotel may not have a lot of choice. Should the weights be a little light, you can do high reps, lots of sets, and take very short rests. If there is nothing more than some exercise mats and some cardio, do a cardio/ bodyweight circuit. Make the most of what you have and be ready to improvise.
Use Resistance Bands
Suspension trainers, such as the TRX, are ideal exercising on the road. Portable and light, you can do an entire workout for every muscle in your body using suspension trainers. All you need is a tree, a post, or a door anchor.
Or try resistance bands. Like suspension trainers, resistance bands are super light and portable. What’s more, you can perform virtually every strength training exercise that you’d do at the gym. Combined with a door anchor and handles, you’re basically are holding a gym in the palm of your hand for less than the cost of one-month’s gym membership.
Check Out the Hotel Pool
Many hotels have swimming pools and while they are sometimes on the small side, you can still get a good workout done. Just be sure to focus on making it a workout. It’s easy to drift and get lost in thought while in the pool. But that can be okay too. Nothing is as relaxing as unwinding in a large body of water. If that’s what your body is telling you, it might be a good idea to just go with he flow.
Swim some laps, do some interval training, or try some deep water running. You can also do some aquatic strength training by mimicking your normal strength training exercises against the resistance of the water.